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How to deal with dbros divorce

(16 Posts)
Funghoul Thu 13-Nov-14 23:25:48

Think this is going to be long sorry.

Dbro and Sil split about 2 months ago. At first it seemed she was depressed about her work situation. She's had bullying in the workplace and 2 redundancies this year and eventually this caught up with her. She moved back to her parents, sought out a counsellor and it seemed a case of her taking it out on the wrong person. Dbro was devastated, but after a week she moved back into their home, into the spare room and they had a couple of date nights in an attempt to save their marriage.

About a week later she met up with my mum and told her many things, amongst which she said she only loved db as a friend. A couple of days later they talked and db said it was over, he'd made an effort that she was not willing to make and that he couldn't really trust her anymore. He knows she's not in love with him and neither of them can live like that.

I feel caught in the middle. I'm supporting db as much as he will allow but he isn't brilliant at talking about his feelings. We've had a few awkward conversations about the whole thing but he's going to be fine. He talks about Sil and how she is now. He has taken on the mortgage himself as it turns out that he has funded almost all of the household expenses and can afford it. Sil earns a low wage and cannot afford the house herself. She's know asking for lots of big pieces of furniture from the house that db paid for alone, and for specific things that she knows db likes, when they're are a couple to choose from. Some of the things she's complained about seem unreasonable and whilst we've always known that she's lived in a bubble where everything is perfect, she's struggled with aspects of her life that aren't how she thought they would be.

I don't know if I should contact her. It would be nice to think that if I saw her I could be friendly towards her, but she broke my brothers heart and I don't trust myself not to say anything to her about that. Sil parents have been in touch with db quite a lot but our family seem to have abandoned Sil and this doesn't sit quite right with me. I don't want to involve myself in things, db has to do this himself and we can't do it for him, but I know I can't keep my trap shut if I see her! I have a birthday present for her (in a few weeks time) and I don't know whether to send it or not. The more that db tells the less I want to know her if I'm honest. I don't know what to do or how to help db.

If you get to the end thank you!

Windywinston Thu 13-Nov-14 23:39:26

Divorce is messy for everyone involved, so my advice would be to not get involved. Support your DB of course and SIL if you have that sort of a relationship, but avoid saying anything you might regret later, or which might make things worse.

One thing from your post I'm uncomfortable with is your concern for who paid for their marital assets. He might have funded the majority of material possessions, but she may have contributed in other ways. Marital assets should be shared, your DB is getting the house (and presumably any equity built up in it), so for her to ask for some of their possessions, even large items, doesn't strike me as unfair.

Funghoul Thu 13-Nov-14 23:55:54

They haven't been married for very long and the house is in negative equity now. The money thing does play on our family's mind a lot as she is a very materialistic person and likes to have lots of expensive things. Without going into loads of detail there have been a few things happen where it feels like she's taking him for a ride. Db isn't as bothered about the things now he has sorted the house. Sil has a substantial inheritance to come from her parents that me and db simply won't get from ours as our parents don't have as much as hers. My mum in particular worries about db being 'wiped out' and us just not having the means to get him back on his feet. I hope that makes our money worries a little clearer. If it was me if just let her have what she wants in order for her to stop dragging this out.

This whole thing feels like a bereavement in a way and I didn't expect to feel like this and it isn't me who's going through it.

Isetan Fri 14-Nov-14 02:54:43

How old is your brother? You talk about him like he's a child. He owns his own home, which you say he can afford the mortgage on, why would you think he may need financial help now or in the future. If your brother isn't a talker than where are you getting so much detailed information from?

You've basically called your SIL grasping and materialistic, you may have tolerated this woman but it is obvious you don't like her. Her marriage/ divorce is none of your business and any cozy chat you engineer would have a hidden agenda.

scarletforya Fri 14-Nov-14 03:04:52

You need to step back from it.

You say your family has 'abandoned' Sil, that's not what's happened. Your ex-Sil has broken up with your brother, this what she wants. There's no 'role' for your family here. If her parents want to contact your db that's their choice but it's not expected in a break up.

I'd just withdraw, support your db obviously but forget about your ex-Sil.

Coyoacan Fri 14-Nov-14 03:57:18

As others have said divorce is messy. When I split up from my ex-H we only had a record collection, but that was good enough to fight over.

It is perfectly reasonable for people to split up with the love has gone and you are only hearing and will only hear one side of the story.

thenamehaschanged Fri 14-Nov-14 06:10:33

Their marriage, their business, two to tango and all that - stay out of it and respect the fact that she wants to move on with her life. Ever considered the possibility that your Db might have been a crap husband? Especially as he doesn't talk feelings. She left to stay with her parents, sought counselling and then eventually moved back into the spare room to give things another go but it didn't work - that doesn't sound to me like it was her redundancy that was the issue. Maybe behind closed doors he picked on her depression and was a really shit shag? I.e how much further do you want to delve into this couples business?

FolkGirl Fri 14-Nov-14 08:05:59

In the nicest possible way, it's absolutely nothing to do with you. You do sound overly involved in your brother's relationship.

There are things you can't possibly know - on both sides.

My marriage broke down 2 years ago. This summer, I explained some of the dynamics in my marriage to my brother and he was shocked. He'd had no idea! Some of the dynamics could be 'proved' with facts. But I'm sure my exH would still have a different perspective.

After all, there are as many sides to a story as there are people telling it.

It's also best to keep out of it to allow an amicable outcome. I sometimes see my exILs (bil and pil) and, because everyone else kept their noses out, it means we can all be civil to each other when it happens.

ArgyMargy Fri 14-Nov-14 08:13:41

Folk I think that is unfair. It is quite possible to be close as siblings and the OP clearly cares about her brother. She also cares about her sister in law. I think one course of action might be to try and get brother to open up a bit more about how he really feels.

FolkGirl Fri 14-Nov-14 08:20:46

I don't think it's unfair. My brother was very angry when my exH and I split up. They've not seen each other since it happened. It would be very unpleasant if they did.

I maintained a good relationship with my exMIL and am friendly with my bil and his wife when I've seen them. But that could only happen because they kept out of it.

The bottom line is, that no one knows what goes on behind closed doors. and the OP is being very critical of her sister in law. It doesn't sound as though she cares about her particularly...

thenamehaschanged Fri 14-Nov-14 08:44:08

I'm going through it now and agree with what Folk and everybody else says.

My parents are on my side, his parents are on his, bil supportive and acting as go between for kid contact but ultimately is on H's side - mil and sil desperate to talk to me but I am avoiding all contact because I fear they may have views like OP and as he was a completely abusive arsehole, I don't want to hear any of their crap at the moment, they have no idea what an animal he can be and it would therefore infuriate me to hear mil or sil harping on negatively about my depression or my financial rights to the house and furniture being the lower earner that I am.

So yes - stay out of it op, he's a grown man smile

Funghoul Fri 14-Nov-14 19:40:55

Ok, thank you, but I am keeping despite what I may feel like saying. We are close siblings so I suppose in just upset that he's having to go through this. Sil has fully admitted that the problem is hers and that db is perfect just not someone who makes her heart skip a beat. She is materialistic, something she is up front about. I do care about her but I feel like loyalties lie with db and I don't want to upset him by speaking to her. She texted me earlier and I replied so it's obvious that it's going to be awkward but I'm sure we will work something out.

Divorce is something we have never dealt with before, so knowing how to talk to everyone without offending anyone is a bit weird.

Lovingfreedom Fri 14-Nov-14 19:47:41

Just stick to supporting your brother. Being on everyone's side is not helpful and it's really not your business.

RandomMess Fri 14-Nov-14 20:06:51

If they have negative equity surely they should be selling things that have value so there is less debt to split!

RubbishMantra Fri 14-Nov-14 20:31:42

Don't get caught in the middle - after all, you're not impartial, what with him being your brother and you viewing her as "materialistic". So unlikely you'll see their situation fairly, from both sides.

Just be a good, supportive sister to your brother. Let them work it out between themselves. A marriage is between 2 people. Not their extended family.

RubbishMantra Fri 14-Nov-14 20:36:39

Sil has fully admitted that the problem is hers and that db is perfect Oh dear.

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